Real People with a Real Disease: These are the Faces of Celiac Disease.

3 million Americans and millions more around the world suffer from celiac disease (a staggering 83% of them undiagnosed). This is a real disease affecting real people. Women and men. Young and old. All eating gluten-free to survive and to thrive. What better way to raise awareness than to show the actual faces behind the disease; to build a wall with our pictures and our stories.

Please do your share in raising awareness by adding YOUR FACE and YOUR STORY. Just fill out this form and I will add you to The Wall.

To learn a bit more about each person below and what celiac disease means to them, mouse over their picture (or tap the pic if you’re on mobile).

[Last updated: February 10, 2019. Currently on the Wall: 1,517. Keep ’em coming.]


I have no advertising on this site and I plan on keeping it that way. If you'd like to say thanks for the efforts I put in to the celiac community, MY TIP JAR IS OPEN. Thanks!

popular book on celiac disease

49 Comments

  1. 1

    michelle

    Love this! Can’t wait to see my girls up here. Happy and healthy eating to you all!! :)

    Reply
  2. 2

    Deb

    This was a great idea, and I hope the community will share this wall everywhere. Although we have a disease, we are often looked at like we are a pain in the butt to society. So sorry for inconveniencing anyone with the disease I was chosen to deal with. We are given what we need in this life, so I have read. So we have to take this disease and use it for something good. In a way, I feel that the people with Celiac Disease have actually caused the clean food movement that is currently happening across the world. That is good. No. That is great! So if we were chosen to lead the way into better food for all, I am grateful for that call. We can’t be quiet about this disease. It is, I feel, the tip of the iceberg when it comes to how important food is to our health. So, I am grateful for people like you, GD, who spend so much time and put in so much effort to bring the community together and make having this disease just a little easier for so many. And so grateful for the community!! Wouldn’t it be fun to have some kind of GD Celiac Wall gathering? Imagine going to a huge function where everyone there had to eat gluten free!!

    Reply
      1. 2.1.1

        Aloha Julie

        Me too, how about out here in Hawaii….!!

        Reply
  3. 3

    Pam Beech

    This is a fab idea…Gluten Dude you have done so much to make our illness visible to others and to help newly diagnosed…Thank you from the heart :)

    Reply
  4. 4

    Jeanne

    This is so powerful, and I look forward to seeing All of Us as the photos come on. I’ll be sharing this with everyone I know. I love how our short-version personal stories appear as you hover the mouse over the picture. Perfect way to do it. I want to share this with everyone I know, and I also want to share it with myself, whenever I’m having a bad day, to see all the rest of my team here. Thank you.

    Reply
  5. 5

    Aloha Julie

    GD, this is great! Awesome idea.

    Reply
  6. 6

    MooseMalibu

    Great job, GD! I love this.

    Reply
  7. 7

    OKCJJN

    I love this but I’m interest to know why so many of the faces are female? Are we online more and share more often or are there more females with celiac disease.?

    Reply
    1. 7.1

      Rhiannon

      I am betting that more women are apt to speak up and chime in than men. I noticed the same thing though. :)

      Reply
    2. 7.2

      Dick L.

      Most of the things I’ve read about the disease indicate that it strikes women more often than men (my impression from a year and a half of reading such stuff is that the ration is about 2:1), but the near absence of adult men on the page (and as authors of blogs– GD is a pretty rare male presence among celiac bloggers) probably just means we’re less social. Personally I’m planning to try to find a reasonably good picture and send it in. My most recent pic was for a visa; it was taken not very long before my diagnosis, and I looked pretty bad. I suspect as time goes on more of us will get around to it, and males will be a bit more common on the page.

      This photo wall is a great idea, and I do intend to support it.

      Reply
    3. 7.3

      Luna

      Female and white. Almost all the faces are white. Interesting.

      Reply
  8. 8

    Rhiannon

    Very cool, GD! Nice work! I am quite floored by how many of these folks have been diagnosed with in the past 5 years. It makes you wonder what was happening before that. I am SOOO very thankful that I had found doctors that actually listened to me and continued to search for answers with me after years and years of being sick and being told I was basically crazy. I think I would have been dead by now if they hadn’t, I was THAT sick.

    Reply
    1. 8.1

      Gluten Dude

      I picked up on the same things. Perhaps those diagnosed earlier aren’t online as much as us? Not sure. As for the lack of “dudes”, I’m not sure what the breakdown of diagnosis is between men vs women. I do know that my FB audience is about 85% female and that’s reflected here for sure.

      Reply
  9. 9

    Gloria

    Thank you, thank you, for bringing everyone together. I will read every picture you post. This is lovely. I see myself on there and my 1996 diagnosis, and I realize I am an “old hand” at celiac. I was diagnosed for 2 years before I even met one other person with celiac. It is wonderful that there is a community now.

    Reply
  10. 10

    Sharon

    I am wondering if this could be a way and/or resource for us to start local support groups. My two sons were just diagnosed in November 2014 and I’m still learning everyday and I would love more support. We go to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia but are located near Princeton, NJ and it’s to far to go to their monthly meeting. Just a thought if anyone else has an interest.

    Reply
    1. 10.1

      Gluten Dude

      It’s on my to-do list for this site. As soon as I edit another 400 images ;)

      Reply
      1. 10.1.1

        Martha Kight

        You are awesome. That is all. (For now :) )

        Reply
    2. 10.2

      CR

      Hi Sharon, I encourage you to start a support group if one is not in your area. You don’t have to join an organization to do so. I started one in our town and we’ve had 3 meetings so far with around 10 people at each one. I simply set the date for the first meeting at our local library, set up a Facebook page and group email address, had some cards printed up, and started spreading the word. Everyone I’ve met has been so grateful that someone kicked off a group and members are becoming involved. I certainly don’t know everything but we are all happy to be able to come together, share information on all kinds of relevant topics, and support each other. The Celiac Disease Foundations Manual for Group Facilitators is downloadable from their site and is a great guideline to go by. Good luck!

      Reply
    3. 10.3

      Kathy

      My daughter is 16 and we live in Chester County Pa. She was diagnosed about a year ago.
      After the initial ‘thrill’ at having an answer, reality set in. I don’t need to explain – everyone here understands those feelings that crop up once in a while. I think being a teenager and hoping to date is a concern for my beautiful smart talented daughter. I’d love for her to meet more kids her age – male and female – who live some what close. I have searched high and low and can’t find a gosh darn group of Celiac teens anywhere 😉
      We drive to Princeton to grab the train into NYC for a show sometimes (Hamilton most recently and it lives up to the hype!).

      Reply
      1. 10.3.1

        Gluten Dude

        Have you tried the forum on this site? You can try to connect with people by age and location.

        Reply
  11. 11

    Christina

    Gluten Dude: I love this idea- you are so creative:) Thanks for all you do for the celiac community and raising public awareness.

    Reply
  12. 12

    Christina

    Creative idea for raising public awareness about celiac disease- Thank you.

    Reply
  13. 13
  14. 14

    Erin

    Seeing this brought tears to my eyes. My son is 4 and was diagnosed in 2012. He may not fully understand what all of these faces and stories mean just yet, but hopefully he will see that he is never alone in this and that the GF community is amazing. Thank you so much for doing this!!

    Reply
  15. 15

    Harpreet

    Is it just me, or do we really have more women up there than men?

    Reply
    1. 15.1

      Gluten Dude

      It’s not even close. C’mon boys!!

      Reply
  16. 16

    Laurie

    Thank you so much for this powerful, supportive message.

    Reply
  17. 17

    Jennifer

    Thank you so much for this, I am enjoying reading all my fellow celiac stories, makes me feel not so alone… ☺

    Reply
  18. 18

    Mrs. Gluten Dude

    THIS IS AMAZING!!

    Reply
    1. 18.1

      Gluten Dude

      I bet you say that to all the boys ;)

      Reply
  19. 19

    Marti

    I submitted two three days ago but we’re posted (from what I can see…(Glenn and Skylar)

    Reply
    1. 19.1

      Gluten Dude

      I am adding about 50 per day…take a bit of time. Hope to catch up with all of them within a few days.

      Reply
  20. 20

    Kirsten

    Thank you, Gluten Dude! It’s so great to read all the responses. I’ve felt and/or thought so many of the things that others have posted. Once again, you’ve made me feel less alone in this journey. For me, that’s half the battle. Thank you!

    Reply
    1. 20.1

      Gluten Dude

      You are quite welcome Kirsten.

      Reply
  21. 21

    Tina

    im on the page. Reading these are inspirational.

    Reply
    1. 21.1
  22. 22

    Christine

    Wow! This is so inspirational, makes me feel not so all alone in this disease. Can’t wait to add my pic and share this.

    Reply
  23. 23

    Shauna

    Yay!! I made the wall.

    Reply
  24. 24

    Jessica

    This is really beautiful. Thanks for making it.

    Reply
    1. 24.1

      Gluten Dude

      Thanks for visiting :)

      Reply
  25. 25

    Sarah

    This is so great! What’s your current turnaround for getting people added?

    Reply
    1. 25.1
  26. 26

    Mac

    Thanks for putting me on the wall… ;)

    Reply
    1. 26.1

      Gluten Dude

      Thank YOU for being a part of it…

      Reply
  27. 27

    Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine

    WOOOOO! My statement was “Celiac Disease is NOT a curse” You put it as “Celiac Disease IS a curse” ….please edit that!

    Reply
    1. 27.1

      Gluten Dude

      On it…sorry about that.

      Reply
  28. 28

    JB

    Yo Dude….simply scanning the pics my guestiate is 80/20 female/male. Being genetic, I would think closer to 50/50. I’m a guy, would not be diagnosed if cutting out gluten alone cured me. It did at first but then came cancers and arthritis and motor nerve disease and worsening GI. Had to cut all sugars, dairy and lots of veggies, and now cutting way back on fat because I don’t digest that either. Down to about ten foods that still hurt but hurt the least. Even fasting hurts now. Anyway….my sister is definitely celiac but won’t go get diagnosed or adopt any lifestyle changes. So my question is, do you have any idea what the gender breakdown is among diagnosed celiacs and has there been any research into gender tendencies when it comes to diagnoses and dietary compliance? I think my sister is inviting more problems than she already has and I need facts to help convince her that she’ll feel better if she gets help and makes some changes. Her husband is a total douche though so that may have soemthing to do with her reservations. Thanks!

    Reply
  29. 29

    Meg

    I love this. Feels good to know that I am not alone, although I don’t wish this disease on anyone. It is so heartbreaking to see so many children in these photos. Let’s keep raising awareness and kick the disease in the butt!
    P.S. I am also a beer lover. I live in CO and consider myself very fortunate to be surrounded by gluten free breweries! :)

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© 2019 Gluten Dude: The Naked Truth About Living Gluten Free | Legal Stuff | Need an Affordable Website?